An Afternoon in the Garden of Good

Posted by Mary Jo Almeida-Shore On April - 23 - 2009

Sterling Nancy, Jesse and Al Malnik at Maw Garden Party

Al and Nancy Malnik, lifetime benefactors of the Intercontinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball, hosted an intimate garden party at their palatial, Art Deco estate on Sunday, for two hundred of the foundation’s top supporters. During his emotional address, Malnik set the bar for this year’s Intercontinental Miami Make-A-Wish Ball at a record $2,000,000.00, eliciting a collective gasp from the select crowd. The billionaire with the huge heart motivated and moved his guests with a personal account, “Nancy and I have recently been touched with our own personal tragedy with one of our little ones, so the foundation has come to mean even more than ever before.” Al Malnik’s son, Shareef, returning Gala Chair, beamed with pride as his father spoke, making it obvious that the two have a close relationship and that Shareef admires his father’s zeal and stamina, (after all, Al, who is in his mid-seventies, has given Shareef six siblings ages of ten and under!) Now that’s chutzpa!

The jazz band and choir from King’s Academy entertained the crowd, who mingled in the estate’s gardens, just steps from the ocean, enjoying passed hors d’oeuvres and cocktails on a perfect Sunday afternoon. At last year’s garden party, a team of synchronized swimmers delighted guests by performing various numbers in the pool, with the precision and prowess of the Bellagio Fountains in Las Vegas.

Distinguished guests included Norman Wedderburn, President/CEO of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida, who assured supporters that he “would not stop, would not sleep, until every wish was granted;” Jack Miller, General Manager of Hotel InterContinental Miami and Gala Host of the IMAW Ball; L. Robert Elias, Chairman of the Board of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Southern Florida and James Ferraro, of The Ferraro Law Firm and Wish Benefactor of the IMAW Ball. Other notable guests in attendance: champion boxer, Bernard Hopkins, burgeoning singer/songwriter, Jamie Jo Harris, designer, Richie Rich, Baby Chic, Nick D’ Annunzio, Tara Solomon, Fabian Basabe, Antonio Misuraca and Michael Valdes. The palpable excitement prevailed throughout the afternoon, in anticipation of this year’s ball to be held on November 7 at the Hotel Intercontinental. Over 900 guests are expected to attend. This year’s host remains a secret, but several attendees requested Sharon Stone return as host this year. Shareef promised he would try. Kim Kardashian did a good job last year, but Sharon Stone left some pretty tall stilettos to fill after the 2007 gala!

 

 

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Mary Jo Almeida-Shore,Jose Almeida,Maryanne Salvat
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